One in six of the UK’s population experience hearing loss. Around 11 million people in the UK experience a gradual decline in their hearing. If you’re experiencing difficulty with your hearing, you are not alone.
Hearing loss doesn’t happen overnight, it often takes years for you to notice a change. It’s often not until your ability to communicate in everyday life is impacted that you realise your hearing has declined. That’s why we advocate early testing and routine hearing checks so you’ll never miss a thing.
Spot hearing loss signs early
There are lots of signs you can look out for to spot whether your hearing is declining. Noticing early and taking action stops even the slightest decline in your hearing from impacting your life.
Early signs you can look out for are:
- Thinking people are mumbling when they speak
- Difficulty hearing others in a crowded restaurant when others seem to be hearing clearly
- Misunderstanding what’s being said
- Having ask people to repeat what they’ve just said
- Not being able to clearly hear other people’s TVs or radios
- Comments on the volume of your own TV or radio
- Having to fill in the gaps in a conversation
Take our online hearing test today
How AIHHP can help
There are lots of friendly AIHHP members that will help you take control of your hearing loss. You don’t need to live with a hearing impairment when local experts can offer the support you need.
All our members will take the time to accurately assess your hearing and offer a solution tailored to your hearing requirements.
Some of the fantastic services local AIHHP members can offer you are:
Hearing aids are one of the most common tools we have for overcoming hearing loss. Technology is always improving, so modern hearing aids are small, discreet and stylish.
There are many types of hearing aid, tailored to different types of hearing impairment. Talking with an audiologist can help you discover which type of hearing aid is best suited for your hearing loss and lifestyle.
Hearing aids are custom made to fit your ear to maximise your comfort and ability to hear. Modern aids are small, discreet and easy to use.
Tinnitus can be incredibly frustrating. The ringing is common in people of all ages but you don’t have to let it impact your quality of life.
AIHHP members can off you lots of support for managing your tinnitus. Many offer a range of devices to help, including: white noise generators and maskers, bedside sound generators, relaxation devices and pillow speakers.
Tinnitus is rarely an indication of a serious condition, so try not to worry if you suddenly start to hear a ringing. It can actually get worse when you’re anxious or stressed. Book an appointment with a specialist to get checked out and learn how you can manage it. Keep active and occupied as much as possible, as many people say they notice tinnitus less when they’re busy and more when it’s quiet.
You might also want to contact the British Tinnitus Association to speak to one of their advisers. They can connect you with local support groups and give you lots more information on the condition to set your mind at ease.
Start protecting your ears before any hearing loss occurs. AIHHP members offer a wealth of advice to help you protect your hearing when working, shooting, swimming, and riding on a motorcycle.
Specialist hearing protection is increasingly popular as people recognise the potential damage of their lifestyles on their hearing. Custom-made ear plugs protect your ears much more efficiently then off the shelf products to reduce your chance of severe hearing loss in the future.
Technology is continually advancing to offer innovative solutions for hearing protection. Electronic hearing protectors for shooting amplify soft sounds but turn off when the gun is fired to protect your hearing. Music ear plugs often use a flat reduction filter, which effectively turns the volume down without compromising on sound quality. Motor cyclists can even have custom protection with high-fidelity speaker units that sound great.
Talk to your local AIHHP member about hearing protection solutions for your lifestyle.
LACE – Listening and Community Enhancement
Listening and Community Enhancement, or LACE, is interactive software that helps you retain your brain to listen to your ears.
LACE doesn’t improve your hearing, but it does improve your listening skills. Even people with perfect hearing can be bad listeners. Good listening skills are essential to effective communication.
Hearing aids are designed to get the sound into your ear and up to your brain, but what your brain does with that sound is up to you. Often, new hearing aid wearers are not able to adjust to the new sounds and end up taking their hearing aids out. With training, you can better adapt to life with a hearing aid and quickly become more satisfied with your ability to communicate.
A certain amount of earwax is good for you, but an excessive build-up of impacted wax can diminish hearing and cause hearing aids to malfunction. There are many different treatments for earwax.
In most cases, earwax falls out on its own. But, if it’s impacting your hearing, causing a hearing aid to whistle, or preventing a clear mould impression for a custom hearing aid, it will need to be removed.
Eardrops are usually the first treatment offered. A few drops into the ear over several days can soften the wax and allow it to fall out. If the blockage persists, a professional can use an electric ear irrigator to clear it. This is a painless, if unusual, experience. You might also be offered microsuction or an aural toilet if you’re unable to use drops or irrigation.
Routine hearing checks
You regularly get your eyes tested, so why not your ears too? Routine checks are the best way to help care for your hearing.
We recommend the following guideline to help you maintain healthy hearing:
18 to 45 year olds: every 5 years
45 to 60 year olds: every 3 years
60 years plus: every 2 years
Routine tests help pick up on early signs of noise damage and can help you take appropriate care of your ears. Exposure to damaging levels of sound is incredibly common, particularly from clubbing, concerts and listening to music through headphones. Taking the time to care for your ears from a young age can help prevent more serious hearing loss later in life.
We don’t make recommendations here for under 18s because paediatric audiology should be the responsibility of the NHS, at least in the first instance. However, individual AIHHP Members may be able to offer you advice on under 18s should you require it.
You don’t have to suffer in silence. If you can understand the limitations of your hearing, you can overcome them.